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The Missouri Clean Diesel Program strives to improve air quality by reducing emissions from on-road and off-road diesel engines. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources pursues funding opportunities for Missouri's fleet owners and operators of diesel equipment. When opportunities become available, the department posts information on this webpage, publicizes them via social media and sends broadcast emails about them. To receive the department's broadcast emails, please subscribe by clicking on the multi-colored envelope on this page and following the prompts.

2018 Clean Diesel Program to Replace School Buses Early; Volkswagen Trust to Provide Second-Chance Funding

Ripley County School Bus For the fourth year in a row, the Missouri Clean Diesel Program will improve air quality by helping owners of school buses buy new cleaner-burning vehicles. Grant recipients must replace buses not scheduled for retirement so that the program can introduce environment- friendly buses into fleets earlier than expected.

Through the federal Diesel Emissions Reduction Act, the department plans to award partial funding for 29 new buses — more than the twice the number funded in previous years. The department expanded the program by aligning it with the Volkswagen Trust; in addition, the trust is enabling the department to offer second-chance funding for applicants not chosen initially.

 For more information on the Volkswagen Trust, visit

Reducing dangerous emissions from diesel engines is vital to the department’s mission of protecting public health. The main benefactors will be schoolchildren, an especially susceptible group. Children have respiratory and immune systems that are still developing. In fact, asthma accounts for more school absenteeism and emergency room visits by children than any other chronic disease.

Diesel emissions contain particle pollution and precursors of ground-level ozone. Particle pollution can penetrate people’s lungs by breaching natural defenses, leading to respiratory diseases. Ground-level ozone is the pollutant of most concern across Missouri; it affects our ability to breathe, and it aggravates asthma and other respiratory diseases. Missouri currently has several areas that violate or come close to violating EPA’s national standard for ground-level ozone. EPA sets a standard for ground-level ozone to protect public health and the environment.

The early replacement program for school buses has given some communities an unforeseen bonus. Before disabling the engines of old buses, a few districts have offered them to area firefighters for hands-on training. Firefighters use the buses to practice extricating passengers in case of emergencies.

The Selection Process

In August 2018, the air program released a request for applications to solicit early school bus replacement projects. Eligible applicants included school bus owners with buses operating in Missouri.The selected applicants will receive up to $22,000 for each bus replaced, with up to three new diesel bus replacements and up to 10 bus replacements for alternative fuels, including propane, natural gas, and 100 percent electricity.The department received 67 applications from 64 school districts and three bus contractors for a total of 137 bus replacements.

In September 2018, the air program held a lottery drawing to select the awardees. The first 29 buses will be funded through the 2018 Missouri Clean Diesel Program, and another 45 buses will be funded through the Volkswagen Trust School Bus category.

Selected Awardees

The list below shows applicants to be awarded under either the 2018 Missouri Clean Diesel Program or the Volkswagen Trust School Bus Category. The list includes selected applicants receiving funding from October 2018 through June 2019, and those selected as alternates who could be funded before June 2019 if a selected awardee declines or withdraws from the project. All alternate applicants will have their projects funded according to the implementation guidelines.

Selected Awardees List